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William Henry "Bill" Cole, Jr.


March 19, 2020


William Henry “Bill” Cole, Jr.,91, passed away on March 18, 2020 at Nottingham Village in Northumberland PA. 

Bill was born in Danville, PA on July 30, 1928 to the late Harry and Viola Rishel Cole where he enjoyed his youth. 

After graduating from Wyoming Seminary in 1946, Bill went on to attend Bucknell University, graduating in 1951 with a degree in commerce and finance.  On April 15, 1952, he married his high school sweetheart, Martha Simington. Two weeks later, he was sent to Germany by the Army for approximately two years during the Korean War.  Upon his return, he worked for Alcoa Aluminum Company in Lancaster before he joined his father in the hardware business in 1956.  

Bill’s life was centered around his family, the family business (Cole’s Hardware) and making Danville a better place for everyone.  While he often worked six days a week at Cole’s Hardware, Sundays were always spent with his family - going to church, Sunday dinners, puttering around at his pond property and taking many naps on his chair. He worked to build Cole’s Hardware from one store when he took over the business from his father to multiple stores by the time he handed the reins over to the next generation. 

His love of the outdoors endured throughout his life - hunting, fishing, and enjoying time with his friends and family at his pond property. He was involved in the fish hatchery that supplies fish for the Montour County Sportsman Work for Kids Annual Fishing Derby and it is still operating on his land.  Bill was a supporter of the Boy Scouts and the American Chestnut Tree Foundation.  His other community involvement included the Danville American Legion, VFW, Danville Kiwanis Club, Danville Retailers and the Danville Chamber of Commerce. 

He was a lifelong and devoted member of Grove Presbyterian Church where his impact was significant.  He faithfully served as an Elder and on numerous committees. 

Bill is survived by his wife of nearly 68 years, Martha ,four children- Kandace Bergerstock (Tim), Bo (Deb), Greg (Sandy) and Gretchen Lee (Jeff) and nine grandchildren- Brett, Kara, Jenna, Nate, Taylor, Lexi, Madelyn, Cole and Tucker.    

He will be remembered by his family and friends as one who always had a generous spirit, lending a hand to those in need and setting a tremendous example for his entire family.  

The family would like to thank the staff at Nottingham Village, Geisinger Medical Center and devoted friends for their support and care over the past several years.  

A private Graveside Service will be held at the convenience of the family.  A Celebration of Bill’s Life will be held on a future date to be announced. 

The family will provide flowers.  Memorial contributions may be made to the Thomas Beaver Free Library 317 Ferry Street Danville PA 17821 or

Neighbors Helping Neighbors Fund of the Danville Area Community Foundation, payable to the Central Susquehanna Community Foundation (CSCF), memo line: Neighbors Helping Neighbors, and mailed to CSCF, 725 W. Front St., Berwick, PA 18603. Online donations can be made at csgiving.org, click on donate, and search Neighbors Helping Neighbors. 

Arrangements are under the direction of Visneski Funeral Home, Inc. 42 West Mahoning Street Danville PA 17821.

Links:  Facebook.com/visneskifh  ~  Twitter.com/visneskifh  ~ www.Visneski.com


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